Game Four: Eagles vs Bills, 4:25 ET
One of the most surprising developments in the NFL this year has been the Buffalo Bills, but not in a good way. After their win over the Jets on Sunday night, the Bills sit at 6-5 but have a gauntlet of a schedule coming up. First, they face the Eagles. The Bills currently sit as the first team out of the AFC playoff picture but have had a rough stretch to get there. The Bills lost themselves a Monday Night Football game against the Broncos, gifting Denver a win with late-game penalties.
However, after a week of being the talk show topic of the NFL, the Bills obliterated a horrible Jets team and dominated their way to a 32-6 victory. Josh Allen is on the doorstep of 3,000 yards this year but has less than a 2:1 touchdown to interception ratio, and has 12 interceptions through 11 games. His 12 interceptions are tied with Sam Howell for the league lead, but Howell has done so in 60 more pass attempts.
The Bills have the star power: Allen, Stefon Diggs, Gabe Davis, James Cook, Dalton Kincaid, and a solid offensive line. However, their defense has been decimated by injury, offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey was fired after their week ten loss to the Broncos. and Allen is playing some of the most questionable football of his career. As their injured defense tries to limp to the playoffs, they welcome in the Eagles, one of the most high-octane offenses in football.
Whether it be the run game with D'Andre Swift and Jalen Hurts, stretching the field with AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith, or their strong defense, the Eagles can hit you from every angle. On paper, this is a rough matchup for the Bills, but did they right the ship enough in their big win over the Jets to give themselves a shot against Philly? Broncos fans should hope that Philly comes out on top. An Eagles win pushes Buffalo to 6-6 and would put the Bills behind the Broncos, and the Broncos would have the head-to-head advantage in any playoff tiebreaker.
Lets look at the percentages
Let's get crazy and say everything breaks Denver's way in week twelve: Broncos win, Bengals win, Bucs win, Jaguars win, Eagles win. In this case, the Broncos playoff chances, according to the NYT simulator, the Broncos' playoff chances would jump from 21% to 34%. The Broncos would move to 6-5, and be in a three-way tie with the Steelers, Bengals, and Texans for spots 6-10 in the AFC standings.
In this scenario, the Texans would be the 6th seed, the Broncos the 7th, the Bengals the 8th, and the Steelers the 9th. However, in a world where the exact opposite happens, the Broncos would likely remain in the 10th spot in the AFC, assuming Kansas City beats the Raiders. In a world with the opposite outcomes and a Chiefs win, the Broncos would have a 6% chance of making the playoffs. Likely, the results are somewhere in the middle, but one can hope, right?